VII: Getting Stronger on the Track: You don’t want to lift heavy weights.. Changing your Angle is like Changing Perspective

Just like changing your perspective can change your life so too can changing the angle you lift can change your physique. Sometimes just changing the way you look at something makes all the difference in the world.

posteriorangle picWhile in recovery the body has one thing to do HEAL.  The body is designed to heal itself, if you let it .

And yes sometimes surgical intervention is required but then there is healing time involved in that too.

The most obvious way to progress is to increase your weight load. SO how to progress and keep things interesting when you have restrictions placed upon you and lifting heavy is not on option… Change the angle.

By simply changing the way you stand or angle the of the weight bench you can target your muscles from a different angle, recruit adjacent muscle fibers and stabilizer muscles and promote a more balanced, symmetrical physique.lateral angle pic

If you continue to lift weights in the same angle every time you will only get stronger at that angle and eventually you will either plateau or create imbalances.

If your scared of lifting heavy weights because you think you’re going to get big and bulky, which by the way is a BIG MYTH, (you get big and bulky from the eating the wrong foods) this a perfect technique for you to incorporate into your training regimen.

Biceps anglepicsNot only did I use this technique while in recovery but I use it with my clients because it integrates movement in daily functional living.  From day to day we lift, we push and we move our bodies in different ways and different angles your body needs to be strong and ready for anything that comes your way.

Other options are varying your speed, changing grips, and recovery time between sets.

Doing angles you’ve never tried—even when completed on a common exercise—are almost like brand-new movements altogether. Your perspective of the same 10-pound weight will be completely different .

Simply adjusting your angle keeps it FRESH and offers up a whole new perspective!

DO WHAT YOU CAN WHILE YOU CAN’T DO!

GO for Life! ™joycethumb

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

 

IV: Getting Back on The Track still – Achieving Balance and Single-Limb Training

This is a reoccurring theme.. Maybe it’s because it is so difficult to achieve and maintain.  At least for the time being this theme keeps coming up for me in my recovery.  It’s like two steps forward one step back.. Just as I begin to think I’m done with this recovery thing something pulls me back to let me know that I’m still in it.

SL stepupThe imbalance between the right and left side is persistant at making me notice that I still have work to do.

Six months out now and feeling frustrated … more than slightly.  Just the other day I decided to test my body.  I tried a light jog only to wake up 2 days later and find my neck stiff as a board and couldn’t turn it.

Thankfully nothing that a chiropractic adjustment couldn’t fix but still a reminder that there’s more work to be done before I’m free.

These imbalances between right and left occur more often than you think.  If you get used to doing things always with your dominant side and never train the other side, over time  you are more than likely to develop an imbalance. You may not notice it for years to come but prepare yourself because when it does hit you will feel the pain in all areas that will be trying to overcompensate for your weakness. You’ll be dumbfounded wondering what hit you.

SO how to correct these imbalances or prevent them before they get you?

SINGLE LIMB TRAINING

Single-Limb training corrects left-right strength and size asymmetries and improves general balance and proprioception different from the way heavy resistance training does.

SL deadliftAnother method I implement is adding one extra set on the right.  So basically I start and finish with the right side for 4 sets on the right and 3 on the left, in an attempt to correct the weakness on my surgical side and bring it up to par with the left.

Here are some examples of exercises you can incorporate into your workout:

•Single-leg deadlift

•Single-leg squats

•Balance lunges SL Balance lunge

•Strict step-ups

•Single-leg hops

•Single leg calf raises

These provide the smallest possible base of support and require the greatest proprioceptive response. An excellent tool for developing stability, balance and strength interdependently of each other.

Though it takes twice as long to train each leg individually as it would to train them both at the same time this can serve as a bonus to increase your metabolic conditioning which means you can burn more fat  : )

Well at least with the two step forward and one step back method I’m still moving forward :)

Hit me up for more exercises.

DO WHAT YOU CAN WHILE YOU CAN’T DO!

GO for Life! ™joycethumb

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

 

On the Road to Recovery IV- Cardio – Keeping the Heart Healthy when Using Your Legs is a ‘Hard Limit

What’s worse not being able to train your legs or not being able to do cardio?

Not being able to train both is catastrophic to both your metabolism and your heart health. Since both control your heart rate and both control the rate at which you burn fat, maintaining your weight or keeping body fat levels at bay can be challenging if not straight up difficult. (Continue reading for the answer…)

Finding ways to keep my heart rate up without using my legs was challenging for me.  Here are 2 ways I found to keep my heart up at least at a recovery rate of 120 bpm:Bouey

•The first was to put a buoy between my legs and swim with my arms for 30 minutes.

•The second, the arm bike, I would slap on my heart rate monitor and monitor my heart rate for 30 minutes to stay within a recovery heart rate fat burning zone.

armbikeThis is turn does a few things:
1. Put me in a recovery-training zone, which helps to speed up recovery.
2. Helps to circulate blood around the body, to the working muscles and into the healing area to once again speed up recovery.
3. Keeps my heart rate just high enough to burn a minimal amount of fat and train my heart without overstressing the body and again helping to speed recovery.

I can’t say this was fun but I was determined to keep some semblance of physical fitness throughout my recovery to make things easier on me both during and after.

It helped keep me focused and maintain a positive perspective and help attain that feel good serotonin release, even if just for a little bit.

The answer: Leg Training

When training your legs you can elicit both a rise in heart rate for a cardio benefit and strength training to maintain strength and lean muscle for a speedier metabolism and increased circulation for a speedier recovery.

Keep moving people.

DO WHAT YOU CAN WHILE YOU CAN’T DO!

GO for Life! ™

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

The Road to Recovery – Do What You Can When You Can’t DO (workout video inside)

Over the years I can’t even tell you, pardon my being so blunt, the number of dumb excuses I’ve heard why people can’t workout.

You’ve been sidelined by injury, illness or limitations, the road to recovery can be long arduous, boring and depressing but you can make it easier for yourself by staying active and  keeping the rest of you strong.

People are always asking me to post workouts videos and my feelings were, there are so many already out there, why post another one when you can google any exercise you want to see.

I found no reason to post and share until NOW

My restriction is non weight bearing lower body for 4 weeks.  That seemed impossible to someone like me.  Here I post my first upper body circuit workout 2 weeks post op after my 2nd hip surgery this year : o

My point is this, there is plenty you CAN DO while you are recovering from an injury, a surgery or any thing that creates limitations for you, the trick is to work around it!

Do what you can to stay strong while the rest of you mends.  Keep moving what you can and get the blood circulating.  The stronger you are the faster you will heal : ) This will cut your recovery time make it that much easier to get back to where you were and stay in shape while you recover.

NO MORE EXCUSES PEOPLE!

Keep Moving

GO for Life! ™whoefoodscrutches

In peace, health & with much love,

 

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

5 More Weight Training Truths

This applies to all ages, genders & fitness levels not just the ladies…

weightsBurning Calories: Muscle tissue is dense and burns calories even at the state of rest: more muscles equal more calories burned.

Stronger Bones: Weight-bearing exercises stimulate new bone growth, which helps ward off bone loss and osteoporosis that afflict many women as they age.

Joint Protection: Weight training builds the muscles around your joints, which keep the joints stable and able to withstand strain.

Functional Fitness: Lifting weights keeps us strong enough at any age to lift groceries, climb stairs and other daily activities.

How functionally fit can you be if you don’t have the strength to be functional?

Good looks: A firm, toned body, from head to toe, is always appealing. And when you look great, you feel great!

GO for Life! ™contact

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

3 Myths & Truths about Women & Weight Training Revealed

In honor of  National Women’s Health & Fitness Day -September 24th  here are a few tips for the ladies…

3 Myths & Truths about women & weight training revealed.

weightsMyth #1:  Women who weight train look manly

Truth: A hormone called testosterone gives men the ability to gain greater muscle mass than women. Although women have small amounts of this hormone, the average woman doesn’t produce enough to cause her to “naturally” grow large muscles like a man.  If you bulk up your diet is the culprit not the weights.

Myth # 2:  If I start weight training and stop, my muscles will turn into fat.

Truth: Muscle and fat are two totally different types of tissues. If you began a resistance training program and stop, your muscles will become smaller through a process known as atrophy. When you gain weight, your body stores excess units of energy in your cells in the form of fat. These tissues are different in form and function. One does not turn into the other.

Myth # 3: Consuming protein will help me gain muscle.

Truth: Your body uses protein to build and repair muscle tissue that’s been stressed by external resistance, such as weight training. Consuming protein alone will not increase muscle size or strength. It requires both lifting weights and eating protein.

Cardio alone does not build lean muscle tissue that changes the shape of your body and metabolism.

The benefits of weight training far outweigh those of just cardio alone.

What you will be with weight training is stronger, leaner, fitter, firmer & just overall BETTER!

Woman on weights see picture to the right….

Bring it On Ladies!Joycelyn-053web

GO for Life! ™

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer